About: Basil likes warm sunny locations, good drainage, and lots of water.
Starting Sow seeds 1 cm deep in a sterilized seed starting mix. Basil is prone to damping off, so once the seeds sprout, ensure adequate ventilation. Keep Basil under very bright light. Using bottom heat speeds germination.
Growing Use any rich, loose, well-drained soil. Once plants are 15 cm tall, pinch out the growing tips to encourage really bushy growth prior to harvest. Watch for signs of flower buds forming in mid-summer, and pinch these off to promote more foliage. Encourage larger plants by planting Basil seedlings 20-25 cm apart or in containers
Fertilizer, Light, and Water. Provide high soil fertility and light, loose soil to get the largest leaves. Adding pearlite or vermiculite to the soil when planting is a good idea. If available use earthworm compost in pots and containers. Great Basil means regular heavy feeding.
Growing Notes. Remember that it is critical to plant basil in the garden only after late spring day and nighttime temperatures stay above 10°C. Harvest sprays of little leaves after plants have filled out to form neat umbrella shapes. Plants make a richly scented edging for flower or herb beds, or plant in pots at least 6 inches in diameter per plant. Keep flower buds pinched off to extend harvesting and feed regularly to promote new growth.
Basil is easy to grow in warm sunny conditions. It is easy to grow indoors, in containers. Basil transplants well and can be started ahead in cell blocks. Basil is as aromatic in the kitchen as it is in the garden. Fresh Basil has significantly more flavour than dried, which means it’s a great fresh herb for the kitchen window. Cooks around the world use basil. It is perhaps most popular in Mediterranean and Asian dishes. It is a great addition to most vegetables, fish, poultry dishes, and summer salads. Basil is the key ingredient of pesto. Basil is often matched with tomatoes in recipes
In the garden basil is a companion plant that is said to enhance the growth of both tomatoes and peppers.
In zones 4-10 it is an annual but in tropical regions, it is a perennial. Indoors, a single basil plant, pinch well can grow for several years and grow 60-90 cm high providing fresh leaves continuously. If growing indoors try to prevent any seed formation by pinching leaves.